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Welcome to the shark portal!
Welcome to the shark portal!

Sharks (superorder Selachimorpha) are a group of fish species with a full cartilaginous skeleton. There are over 400 extant species of shark, as well as numerous extinct species known from recovered teeth and bones. Due partially to fear of shark attack, sharks often feature heavily in popular culture.

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A captive nursehound in Kölner Zoo
The nursehound, large-spotted dogfish, greater spotted dogfish, or bull huss, Scyliorhinus stellaris, is a species of catshark, family Scyliorhinidae, found in the northeastern Atlantic Ocean. It is generally found amongst rocks or algae at a depth of 20–60 m (66–197 ft). The nursehound shares its range with the more common and closely related small-spotted catshark (S. canicula), which it resembles in appearance but can be distinguished from in having larger spots and nasal skin flaps that do not extend to the mouth. The maximum reported length of this species is 1.6 m (5.2 ft).

Nursehounds have nocturnal habits and generally hide inside small holes during the day, often associating with other members of its species. A benthic predator, it feeds on a range of bony fishes, smaller sharks, crustaceans, and cephalopods. Like other catsharks, the nursehound is oviparous in reproduction. Females deposit large, thick-walled egg cases, two at a time, from March to October, securing them to bunches of seaweed. The eggs take 7–12 months to hatch. Nursehounds are marketed as food in several European countries under various names, including "flake", "catfish", "rock eel", and "rock salmon". It was once also valued for its rough skin (called "rubskin"), which was used as an abrasive. The conservation status of this species has not yet been evaluated by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).


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Leopard shark in kelp.jpg
Credit: Matthew Field
The leopard shark is a species of houndshark found along the Pacific coast of North America from the U.S. state of Oregon to Mazatlán in Mexico.

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Shark · Outline of sharks

Shark orders
Carcharhiniformes (groundsharks) · Cladoselachiformes (extinct) · Eugeneodontida (extinct) · Heterodontiformes (bullhead sharks) · Hexanchiformes (most primitive sharks) · Hybodontiformes (extinct) · Iniopterygia (extinct) · Lamniformes (mackerel sharks) · Orectolobiformes (carpet sharks and relatives) · Pristiophoriformes (sawsharks and relatives) · Squaliformes (gulper sharks, bramble sharks, lantern sharks, rough sharks, sleeper sharks, dogfish sharks and relatives) · Squatiniformes (angel sharks) · Symmoriida (extinct) · Xenacanthida (also known as Xenacantiformes, extinct)

Major species
Basking shark · Blue shark · Bull shark · Great hammerhead · Great white shark · Grey reef shark · Hammerhead shark · Megalodon · Megamouth shark · Nurse shark · Oceanic whitetip shark · Requiem shark · Scalloped hammerhead · Shortfin mako shark · Swellshark · Thresher shark · Tiger shark · Whale shark

Shark biology
Ampullae of Lorenzini · Mermaid's purses · Physical characteristics of sharks · Shark teeth · Shark threat display

Shark-human interaction
Attack (drum lines, International Shark Attack File, Jersey Shore shark attacks of 1916, list of fatal, unprovoked shark attacks in the United States, shark net, shark proof cage, shark suit, Summer of the Shark) · Captivity (shark tunnel) · Conservation (grey nurse shark conservation, Shark Alliance, Shark Conservation Act, Shark Trust) · Fishing (International Land-Based Shark Fishing Association, land-based shark fishing) · Products (shark cartilage, shark finning, shark fin soup, shark liver oil)

Sharks in culture
Sharks in popular culture · The Gulf Stream (painting) · The Headington Shark · "Helicopter Shark" · Jabberjaw · Jaws (film) (Jaws (novel), Jaws (film series)) · Meg: A Novel of Deep Terror · The Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of Someone Living · Shark Tale · Sharky & George · Sherman's Lagoon · Street Sharks · Watson and the Shark

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Portal:Marine life
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